List of Colorado Catholic Priests Accused of Childhood Sexual Abuse

LIST OF COLORADO CATHOLIC PRIESTS ACCUSED OF CHILDHOOD SEXUAL ABUSE

More than 50 Colorado Catholic priests have been identified as perpetrators of sexual abuse.

During the week of November 30, 2020, the Colorado Attorney General cited nine new priests, in addition to the 43 individuals named in the initial October 2019 report, of sexually abusing children in their congregations.

The 52 priests are collectively guilty of sexually abusing at least 212 children between 1950 and 2020. Two priests out of the Denver Archdiocese are responsible for 80 of the incidents; Father Harold Robert White sexually abused 62 children, and Father Leonard Abercrombie has been connected to 18 victims. These are the highest numbers of reported abuse among the 52 priests.

List of Priests Named by the Colorado Attorney General

The following priests, organized based on their location, have been accused of at least one count of childhood sexual abuse. The nine priests newly identified on December 1, 2020, are indicated with an asterisk (*).

Denver Priests

The identified priests out of the Denver Archdiocese are:

  • Father Leonard Abercrombie,
  • Father Robert Banigan,
  • Father Thomas Barry,
  • Father Joseph Bosetti,
  • Father Charles Brown,
  • Father Rafael Jairo Calle,
  • Father Timothy Evans,
  • Father Edward Fraczkowski,
  • Father Kenneth Funk*,
  • Father Neil Hewitt,
  • Father John V. Holloway,
  • Father Daniel Kelleher*,
  • Father Delisle Lemieux,
  • Father John J. McGinn,
  • Father James Moreno*,
  • Father Francis Pettit,
  • Father James Rasby,
  • Father Leonard Scezney,
  • Father John Harley Schmitt,
  • Father Gregory Smith*,
  • Father Lawrence St. Peter,
  • Father John Stein,
  • Father George Weibel,
  • Father Charles Woodrich*,
  • Father Robert Whipkey,
  • Father Harold Robert White, and
  • Father Thomas Woerth.

This list is accurate as of December 1, 2020.

Colorado Springs Priests

Currently, Father William Martinez is the only priest out of the Colorado Springs Diocese accused of sexual abuse.

Pueblo Priests

The Colorado Attorney General’s report listed the following priests out of the Pueblo Diocese:

  • Father John Beno,
  • Father Delbert Blong,
  • Father Leo Bonfadini,
  • Father Walter Buetzler,
  • Father Andrew Burke,
  • Father Michael Descoise,
  • Father William Gleeson,
  • Father William Groves,
  • Father John A. Haberthier,
  • Monsignor Marvin Kapushion*,
  • Father Gary Kennedy,
  • Father Michael J. Krol,
  • Father Daniel C. Maio,
  • Father Philip Marin,
  • Father John Martin,
  • Father Clifford A. Norman,
  • Father Joseph Reade,
  • Father Duane Repola*,
  • Father Lawrence Sievers,
  • Father Carlos Trujillo*, and
  • Father Joseph Walsh*.

This list is accurate as of December 1, 2020.

Below is an updated list from the Colorado Sun containing information about 25 accused priests.

Name Diocese Location(s) Dates Known number of victims Previously identified? Report notes
Father Joseph Walsh Pueblo Sacred Heart Orphanage 1951-54 1 No "Walsh sexually abused this young orphan from the Sacred Heart Orphanage in Pueblo numerous times over several years. Specifically, Walsh enticed the child with trips to an ice cream parlor."

Father Carlos Trujillo Pueblo St. Joseph Parish in Capulin 1978-79 1 No "Trujillo groomed this boy by ingratiating himself with the family, visiting their house, having breakfasts with them after Sunday Mass."
Father Lawrence Sievers Pueblo St. Francis Xavier Parish in Pueblo 1970 2 Yes "After 6 months of grooming (the victim) by getting close to her father, showering her with attention, and professing his love for her, Sievers sexually abused this eighth-grade girl."
Father Duane Repola Pueblo Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish in Grand Junction 1967 1 No "It is not clear from Repola’s file whether the Pueblo Diocese had received any reports of him engaging in sexual misconduct with children prior to his sexual abuse of (the victim). Repola’s record as a diocesan priest and his pattern of assignments indicate that thePueblo Diocese may have been aware that he engaged in such behavior."
Father John Martin Pueblo St. Pius X Parish, St. Mary's 1955-71 3 Yes "Martin sexually abused this St. Mary’s altar server numerous times. Martin bear-hugged him from behind, pushed his hands down inside the boy’s pants and underwear, and fondled the boy’s genitals."
Father Daniel Maio Pueblo St. Patrick’s Church in Pueblo 1967-69 3 Yes "During these sex assaults, Maio whispered 'this is love' in the boy’s ear"
Father Gary Kennedy Pueblo St. Mary Parish in Montrose, St. Peter Parish in Rocky Ford 1967-74 4 Yes "Kennedy had exhibited a pattern of immaturity, imprudence, lack of common sense, and flightiness. The Pueblo Diocese decided in early 1968 to ordain Kennedy to the priesthood, nonetheless."
Monsinger Marvin Kapushion Pueblo Sacred Heart Orphanage, St. Aloysius Parish in Rye, Catholic Charities in Pueblo 1984 1 No "Victim #1 reported his sexual abuse in February 2020. Kapushion died on April 7, 2020. The Pueblo Diocese did not report Victim #1’s allegation to law enforcement until April 20, 2020. In other words, Kapushion was alive when Victim #1 reported his abuse, but the Pueblo Diocese waited until 2 weeks after his death to report him to the police."
Father William Gleeson Pueblo St. Pius X Parish, St. Mary's 1968-69 4 Yes "The Pueblo Diocese had received at least 2 reports of Gleeson sexually abusing children before he abused Victim #4."
Father Andrew Burke Pueblo St. Pius X Parish, Parkview Hospital, St. Joseph Parish in Grand Junction 1971-74 4 Yes "At least 4 years before Burke abused Victim #4 the Pueblo Diocese knew he suffered from a psychosexual disorder that drove him to sexually abuse children. It was also clear to Victim #4 when he met Burke in 1972 that Grand Junction church personnel knew Burke had a problem and shunned him as a result."
Father Delbert Blong Pueblo Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, Sacred Heart Parish 1950s-70s 7 Yes "The Pueblo Diocese had received reports of Blong’s sexual misconduct with children 12 years prior to his abuse of Victim #7."
Father John Beno Pueblo St. Anne's Parish, St. Francis Xavier Parochial School 1961-74 4 Yes "Over a period of months, Beno repeatedly had this St. Anne’s parishioner accompany him to the rectory after Sunday Mass. Once there, Beno kissed Victim #3 and fondled her breasts and vaginal area while she sat next to him and on his lap."
Father Charles Woodrich Denver Holy Ghost Parish in Denver, Our Lady of the Mountains Parish in Estes Park 1976-83 3 No "Woodrich groomed this catechism student and altar server (victim) by befriending his family and him."
Father Harold White Denver St. Catherine Parish, Holy Family School, St. Mary Parish, St. Mary High School, St. Anthony Parish, St. John the Evangelist Parish, St. Mary Parish in Aspen, St. Patrick Parish 1958-81 70 Yes "The Denver Archdiocese’s response to this abuse report in 1980 allowed White’s serial sexual abuse of children to go unpunished and permitted White to continue abusing children unabated. The Denver Archdiocese did not investigate this report. It did not refer it to law enforcement. It did not care for the victim."
Father George Weibel Denver Nativity of Our Lord Parish in Broomfield, St. Francis Cabrini Parish in Denver 1959-74 4 Yes "Victim #3 was an approximately 11- to 12-year-old girl when Weibel sexually abused her."
Father Lawrence St. Peter Denver Holy Family Parish in Denver, St. John the Evangelist School, Holy Family School 1963-83 4 Yes "For at least 12 years before he sexually abused Victim #4, the Denver Archdiocese had been receiving numerous, reliable, consistent reports that St. Peter was sexually abusing children. Indeed, at least by the early 1970s, St. Peter’s sexual misconduct with children was an open secret within the Denver Archdiocese."
Monsinger Gregory Smith Denver St. Frances de Sales Parish in Denver 1971-76 1 No "Over the course of 5 years, Smith sexually abused Victim #1 approximately 1,000 times."
Father James Rasby Denver Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Denver 1969-75 3 Yes "Rasby groomed this Cathedral High School student for two years by taking him to dinners, events, and overnight trips to Glenwood Springs and his cabin."
Father James Moreno Denver Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Parish in Denver, Our Lady Parish in Denver, Spiritual Director at St. Andrew Preparatory Seminary High School in Denver 1978-80 1 No "Moreno sexually abused this boy from 9th grade to college. After a substantial amount of grooming during Victim #1’s freshman year at St. Andrew’s Preparatory Seminary HighSchool in Denver, Moreno showed the boy print and video pornography, plied him with marijuana and alcohol, fondled him, masturbated with him, and engaged in oral and anal sex with him."
Father Daniel Kelleher Denver St. Paul Parish in Colorado Springs 1962 1 No "Kelleher sexually abused this St. Paul’s parishioner once while she was alone with him in his vehicle."
Father John V. Holloway Denver Sacred Heart Parish in Roggen, St. Anthony Hospital, St. John the Evangelist Parish in Loveland, Risen Christ Parish 1962-82 8 Yes "Holloway groomed this altar server by flattering him with special attention and convincing the boy and his parents he was 'a chosen one' destined to be a priest. Holloway then sexually abused Victim #7 numerous times in the rectory at St. John Parish, at another parish in the foothills, and in a van on camping trips."
Father Neil Hewitt Denver St. Therese Parish in Aurora 1962-67 9 Yes "Hewitt groomed this St. Therese parishioner by providing him alcohol, driving him around in his GTO, taking him flying in Hewitt’s plane, and coaching his football team."
Father Kenneth Funk Denver Holy Name Parish in Steamboat Springs 1959-62 1 No "Victim #1 was a 13- and 16-year-old boy when Funk sexually abused him."
Father Timothy Evans Denver St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish in Fort Collins, Spirit of Christ Parish in Arvada, Our Lady of Fatima Parish 1995-99 4 Yes "In March and April 2007, Evans was convicted of assault and sexual assault on children, and he was sentenced to a total of 20 years in the Colorado Department of Corrections.He was released on parole in July 2020."
Father Thomas Barry Denver Annunciation Parish in Denver, St. Joseph’s Parish in Golden 1965-70s 2 Yes "Victim #2 was a 10-year-old girl when Barry sexually abused her."

Contact an Attorney if You Are a Victim of Childhood Sexual Abuse

Unfortunately, there could be more individuals who were sexually abused by these or other Colorado Catholic priests. The attorneys at Denver Trial Layers encourage any childhood sexual abuse victims to contact our sexual abuse attorneys.

Attorneys Michael Nimmo and Parker Stinar have national litigation experience advocating for sexual abuse victims. Currently, they represent more than 150 survivors of sexual abuse against the University of Michigan and the now-deceased Dr. Robert Anderson.

Both attorneys are members of the American Association of Justice Sexual Assault Litigation Group and have previous experience with sexual abuse cases. Attorneys Nimmo and Stinar have the knowledge and persistence to fight for justice for sexual abuse victims, and, equally as important, they approach these cases with sensitivity and compassion.

As the Attorney General’s investigation continues to develop, anyone sexually abused by a Colorado Catholic priest is encouraged to contact Denver Trial Lawyers ® at (303) 647-9990 to discuss their case. Our attorneys have the expertise and sensitivity to advocate for you.

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